BT028. The winners write history

BT028. The winners write history

Guest: Charles Tan | Host: Kat Mayo | Audio producer: Rudi Bremer | Recorded: 10/05/2016 Manila

When I went to Manila last year, I knew I couldn’t pass up the chance to interview one of the podcast’s biggest and earliest supporters, Charles Tan. If you’re into speculative fiction, you might have come across Charles’s work already or follow him on Twitter, particularly if you’re interested in discovering diverse voices in the genre. Charles and I focus more on speculative fiction than romance in this episode, but after the halfway mark, we segue into parallel import restrictions, Wattpad, geoblocking and some of the issues around book pricing and availability for countries like the Philippines. He provides insights on challenges faced by readers, authors and publishers outside the US/UK market, and I think these are important issues to explore when we talk about diversity in publishing. I hope you find it as fascinating as I did.


Charles Tan — Speculative fiction advocate, editor, author and publishing insider: @charlesatanFacebook

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Filipino authors, bloggers and bookish people. ?

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  • BT | Amz | Aud — Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan
  • BT | Amz | Aud — Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
  • BT | Amz | Aud — Game of Thrones series by George R.R. Martin
  • BT | Amz | Aud — Lord of the Rings series by J.R.R. Tolkien
  • BT | Amz — Philippine Speculative Fiction anthologies edited by Dean Francis Alfar
  • Buqo | Amz — Trese by Budjette Tan and and Kajo Baldisimo
  • Amz — Zsazsa Zaturnnah by Carlo Vergara
  • Captain Barbell by Mars Ravelo and Jim Fernandez
  • Darna by Mars Ravelo and Nestor Redondo
  • Kick Fighter edited by Edgar Coloma
  • BT | Amz | Aud — The Forever Watch by David Ramirez
  • BT | Amz | Aud — Girl From the Well by Rin Chupeco


Dean Francis Alfar, David Ramirez, Rin Chupeco, Mina V. Esguerra [ podcast ], Bob Ong, Eliza Victoria


  • Amazon — Shake, Rattle and Roll (films)


  • Palanca Awards — The equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize in the Philippines
  • UP Press
  • Anvil Publishing
  • Komikon – Annual Philippine komiks convention
  • Philippine mythological creatures — You can find a list of creatures and deities at The Aswang Project, including the nuno sa punso. Also see the YouTube video below. If you’re interested in reading more about Philippine mythology, author Anne Plaza has a good list of reference books here, and Rocket Kapre has an extensive list of stories here, including The Legend of Mariang Makiling.
  • Summit Media
  • The White Lady of Balete Street — You can read a summary of this urban myth here (note: backstory mentions rape).
  • Wattpad — You can find a list of Wattpad stories that have been adapted for film and TV in the Philippines here.
  • Parallel import restrictions primer – Part 1 & Part 2. Also check podcast episode BT021, where I chat about PIR with Alex Adsett.
  • Netflix
  • Andrea Pasion-Flores — Author and former literary agent, now the general manager of Anvil Publishing

Missed a previous episode? You can find a list of all the Book Thingo podcast episodes here and catch up. You can also email your feedback and suggestions to

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